Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Saturday, October 11, 2014
Sunday, August 31, 2014
Let's see--a coda from that last date-gone-wrong. I did eventually hear from the fellow in question and all he could do was apologize. He said he "got in over his head." WTF? I was great, attractive, smart, blah, blah...but that was it. It did help a little just to know for sure that he'd changed his mind and wasn't lying in a ditch somewhere. I don't think I'll ever understand what went wrong...and maybe it wouldn't help. I would like to learn something but maybe this isn't that situation.
Anyway, I was on the West Coast for about 10 days and I had a good time. Generally got along with both parents. Dad is usually easier and the problem tends to be I get irritated with him--but I was calm and it was pretty easy. I think it may be better to see him on his home turf where he is more comfortable. That's kind of a drag for me since I don't really love going out to Berkeley, but I need to make more of an effort. Things with Mom were pretty easy too. We snapped a little but she started doing this thing where she called out what was bothering her and it helped diffuse things.
In both cases, I think it helped that I had other things to do so I couldn't be with either parent 24-7. In California, I was attending a conference in San Francisco. I didn't go everyday, but it gave my visit purpose and direction. In Seattle, I had a ton of work to do. That got me out of the house and focused on other things. Mom was able to continue her normal life and not worry about me. Which, of course, she never needed to do but would anyway.
Work is going well too. I'm starting to enjoy it more. I like the challenge of being a project manager and delegating the work. Doing the work...not as much fun, but I'm figuring that out too. Actually running things and making it work is like a puzzle--and I like puzzles.
I have even been out on a couple of dates with a new guy. I'm not sure how I feel about him--yet we've already met twice. Both meetings were short--in total maybe half the time I spent with on that one date with the last guy. This new guy, he's ok. He's kind of cute. He's age appropriate. He's divorced with teenage kids (yikes--not bad, just makes me feel old). I don't think we want the same thing, but then again, do I really know what I want? I guess I'm trying to figure out if it's worth bothering. After all, you can't always get what you want.
Grateful for: time to sort things out.
Wednesday, August 13, 2014
In the morning, though, I felt pretty bad. I couldn't understand why I hadn't heard from him. The three unanswered messages were the only time in the last week that he hadn't responded to me. I'd only ever initiated conversations with him three times so the whole thing didn't make sense. Why, all of a sudden would he go dark? Even in our chats, he'd apologize for long silences and explain he was in a meeting or someone had stopped by to talk to him. That was unnecessary, but kind. Someone who was that considerate, you wouldn't expect to disappear altogether. Some kind of explanation would be forthcoming.
So, Monday. I texted one last time around noon. I said he didn't owe me an explanation but that I hoped he was ok. That I would like to know what happened, but regardless, I had great fun meeting him. That was it. No reply.
Since then, no text, no call, no word, no nothing. It seems bizarre to think that something I did or said scared him off. Sure, I could've just waited to hear from him but I hardly think I was being pushy. By Sunday, I did feel anxious and worried and very unhappy. It hurt that he hadn't reached out to me and it hurt even more that he didn't even bother to respond. Even saying he couldn't talk or had changed his mind would've helped. Yes, I would've been disappointed, but the pain would've been less.
I hope he's not actually ill or injured. That possibility keeps me from sending an angry or sarcastic message--and trust me, it's tempting. It's also tempting to call, but I suppose he wouldn't answer and it's not like I"m going to leave a message.
Right now, today, I don't feel sad and I'm not in pain. But boy oh boy am I curious. If he would tell me what happened, would I want to know? Does he know? What the heck went on here? It is a shame because it's been a long time since I had so much fun with someone and I wanted to see if we would continue to connect. I guess we won't.
I will say, I don't see how my actions are at fault here. Even though I committed the cardinal sins of not letting him text me first this one time and sending him more than one message without getting a response, I don't think that's why he stopped communicating with me. Something else happened and it had already happened before I sent him the first message on Sunday. I can't read his mind, so I don't suppose I'll ever find out what it was. What I can say is that it hurt way more than it should've for such a short acquaintance. But that's how I feel and process things and that's not wrong either.
Grateful for: quick recovery times.
Sunday, August 10, 2014
I keep the fridge out in the back room and the floor of that room has a distinct slope. I've had the fridge on a piece of plywood the whole time it's been out there, but it's still been an issue. This week, I bought a larger piece of plywood to make it easier to position the fridge. I also decided to level it before placing the fridge on it. Doing it that way would actually make it a one-person job and maybe even correct the door's tendency to fall off. Turns out the edge of the board needed to be raised an inch in order to get to level. That is a really steep slope! Anyway, I managed to level the board, move the fridge off the current board on to some scrap boards, position the new board, and then roll the fridge up onto the new level position. While it would've been helpful to have a second pair of hands, I got some satisfaction from doing the whole thing myself.
I also decided to take a look at the back of the fridge, which seemed to be gathering quite a bit of dust. I unscrewed the piece of cardboard fastened to the back and inside I found--the motor and fan! Completely covered in cat-hair enhanced dust. Ugh. I checked the internet to see if or how I should go about cleaning it. The internet was in favor and people were using brushes and a vacuum. I didn't have a brush, but I vacuumed all around and used my hands and a cloth to get at the rest. A weirdly satisfying job. The fridge was working just fine but maybe now it will work even better?
I still have a few bits to take care of, but I'm mostly done. There is laundry, per usual. There are sheets and blankets and pillows to set out for the guests. There is a box full of semi-valuable stuff to hide in a closet. The house will be ready and then it will be time for me to pack. I don't even want to think about that yet. I'll be gone for about ten days. It's been my habit to use a backpack type Tom Bihn bag for travel, even of this length. But I think I'm going to use my old rolling bag for this trip and bring a backpack for my everyday bag. We'll see how it goes.
And...here is the dating update! I cannot believe I wrote that whole boring thing about house cleaning (or my house cleaning failures?) when all I really want to do is talk about a boy.
There is nothing of substance to tell, but I won't let that stop me. We kept up a lively texting conversation for most of the week. Most of our conversations so far have been initiated by him, so I feel pretty good about that. I'm not sure why, but I found the texting slightly troubling. Not because of the content--it was good to be in touch with him and he's funny and clever. Something about it made me a little nervous. I realized that when there was a long pause, I would be in anticipation of a response, even when I didn't have time to carry on a real conversation. I started to put some brakes on, letting him know when I was too busy to chat. That helped a little. What I really wanted was to talk to him on the phone, but the one time I suggested it, he was too tired. That was ok though a little awkward. This weekend, his sister and her family are staying with him, visiting from out of town. On Friday, I started to feel a little anxious because we still don't have plans to get together. I leave town early Thursday morning. Wednesday will be impossible due to the way I pack (always at the last minute!). If we get together before my trip, it has to be Monday or Tuesday. I wanted to say that to him, but somehow I couldn't bring myself to come right out with it. Instead, I confessed to a bit of anxiousness about the uncertainty of when we'd meet again. He said, "...anxious I can deal with." I sure hope so, 'cause you ain't seen nothing yet.
I'm not in my full blown anxiety state, but I'm on the edge. Yesterday (Saturday), I texted him a hello in the morning. He said he was out and about with his family. I said, "sounds good!" and I haven't heard from him since. I didn't expect to hear from him Saturday, though I admit I thought he might text in the evening. When he didn't, I felt ok, but a little on edge. Today, it's mid-afternoon and nothing. I suspect I'll hear from him when his family leaves town and he has a minute to relax. But if I don't hear from him today, how are we to make plans for tomorrow or Tuesday? And that's when I start to go slightly off the rails. Does this mean he changed his mind? Has he decided he doesn't want to see me? Did I say something wrong?
That's the thing, what if the answer to all those questions were "yes"? Let's spin this all the way out. He did change his mind, he doesn't want to see me, and it's all because of something I said. So what? He gets to change his mind. He isn't required to see me. And if I managed to put him off this easily, and inadvertently, then it wasn't going to work out anyway. I don't need any reasons. I'm not interested in reading his mind or changing it. If I weren't to hear from him again, I would be sad. Probably disproportionately sad, but I would also get over it. Per usual.
Here's the other thing--besides cleaning like a mad person, I also forced myself to go out on Saturday evening. I got a bite to eat and saw a movie. Now, doing this alone on Saturday night isn't for everyone but I'm fine with it. On Thursday, I went to a happy hour and spent the whole time talking to a dude (no numbers were exchanged). On Friday, I went to a different happy hour/goodbye party, and talked to lots of people. So, Saturday, it was fine to be on my own. Yet, going out on my own and wishing I were on a date with one particular person was way sadder and lonelier than just being out on my own.
Today, Sunday, in between the cleaning, I took myself out for a nice brunch at my favorite restaurant. This afternoon, I'm invited to a friend's for a get-together. This week has been happy and social for me overall. And the guy has been generally a plus to my mood. I just wish I could forget about him for the moment and stop worrying about when the next text will come. The lack of plans is designed to drive me mad. Maybe I'll text him after I get home from my party.
Sigh. I was hoping to avoid this altogether, but it's still me. What can you do?
Grateful for: a reason to clean the house.
Tuesday, August 05, 2014
I have to say this upfront--I have no idea what's going to happen. It may "work out," it may not. We might have a short run...we might have a long run. We might have no run at all. I don't know and I'm not sure. I had a flash of that feeling of certainty when I first met him. I felt very sure. But I've felt that way in the past and what I've learned is 1) I love that feeling and 2) it's an illusion often based on lies (either ones I'm telling myself or lies from the guy in question). What's interesting is that I had that flash, but then it evaporated. I'm going to count that as a good thing. You can't know anything much after meeting someone once. But you can know if there is something to build on, and we definitely have that.
Years ago, I wrote an epically long post about an epically long date called "kickball pays off" (count me too lazy to link). The post documented a very long accidental first date that went from chatting at the kickball tournament, to dinner, drinks, movies, more drinks, startling revelations, and a little kissing. What followed was traumatic dating of a separated-but-not-divorced man. The writing was on the wall from the get-go, but I ignored it. I was swept up because he was so attentive and insistent, at least in the beginning. And he was fun and easy to be around. But obviously, it didn't work out.
This weekend, I had a similarly long date. It was planned (I met him online), but parts of it were unexpected. We met in a mutually convenient (or inconvenient--more on that later) place. We were going to take a walk but weather and an outrageously crowded mall foiled that plan. Instead, he suggested a nearby restaurant, where we sat and talked for three hours. Now, I've had unenjoyable two-hour dates. Some perhaps lasted longer while I couldn't figure out how to end things. But this date? I didn't even notice the time going by. We zinged along, talking, joking, getting to know each other. It was so easy talking to him and so much fun--we could've gone on quite a bit longer. Around 6:30 (the three hour mark) he said something about going to the (Orioles) baseball game. I said, "who's playing." He paused for a second and said, "the Mariners." Oh. He said, "Should we...should we go to the game?" I said, "We should go to the game." And we did.
The inconvenient part is that he lives quite far away from me--north of Baltimore. An hour plus drive. Of course, I know that doesn't make it impossible. It also acts as natural break--and perhaps a deterrent to flights of fancy. Given the distance and the necessity of planning, it's almost impossible to rush things. In the meantime, we're keeping up a friendly but not constant text conversation. Maybe we'll talk on the phone some evening too. Due to scheduling conflicts it will be more than a week before I see him again. At most I will see him once before I head to the west coast for ten days starting in mid-August.
The strangest part is the complete lack of anxiety I've had so far. He stays in touch. It's easy. We tried to make plans, it's not easy. I have the tiniest twinge because we can't meet this week. His weekend is completely booked with family so I offered to come up mid-week. He had one night free but was thinking about it. It occurred to me today that it might be too much to ask him to spend his one free weeknight with me before hosting his sister, brother-in-law, and three nieces for the entire weekend. So, this morning I told him maybe we should try for next week. Basically, I let him off the hook. I knew he'd feel bad saying no. I knew I would hate to hear him say no, so I preemptively called it off. I was worried that he would think I wasn't interested, but he seemed to understand. As today wore on, it was hard for me not to say something like, "sure you don't want me to come up?" but so far I've resisted. I could spin that as a joke, but I think we all know it's not funny or a joke. So I'm not saying it. And I can wait. I think he's worth it. But even if he's not, I have plenty to entertain me in the meantime. Per usual. I cannot account for my lack of anxiety or weird obsessive thinking otherwise. Maybe it's how we got along, maybe I've finally learned something. Maybe it's a combination. Whatever it is, I'm relieved.
Grateful for: the future.
Tuesday, July 29, 2014
I took yesterday as a sick day. Maybe it was more a mental health day? I kept things running by email, but didn't look anything up and mostly let my staff fend for themselves. I was so tired--again! But this time I think I let the weekend overwhelm me. I did a 20 mile bike ride on Saturday--then spent the rest of the day puttering around the house. On Sunday, I did my volunteer thing again--it's for a bike co-op and I help people fix their bikes. It's really satisfying. But it meant I was outside from around 10:30-2:00pm, perspiring freely. I think I was dehydrated and that's why I was so tired. Maybe? Whatever it was, I don't care. Staying home yesterday felt so good. I was really lazy and just knit and watched tv all day. Perfect. I did go out for a walk in the early evening. The wind was coming up and the sky was lovely. I walked slowly and marveled at all the people out on my local business street. It's just unbelievable. A Monday night, bars and restaurants well-populated, lots of foot traffic...this place is almost unrecognizable.
Today I had my last PT session. It's almost one year (July 31) since my knee surgery. I'm basically 100%. I have exercises I'm supposed to keep up with. I'm going to be good, I promise, even though last week was a dead loss. I'm supposed to go back in a couple of months for a check in, but basically I'm done. My knees sometimes hurt, but it's the old aches and pains, in both knees. My muscles are rebuilt, I"m able to do any activity I like, it's really all good. Amazing.
So, body is good. Work is good. Now I just have to figure out what I want out of life. Oh that little thing.
Here's a little something I finished knitting recently:
It's a shawl but will I wear it? I don't know. I picked up the "rainbow" yarn in a swap so it cost nothing. I had the white/cream hanging around. I felt compelled to knit it even though I don't know if it will be for me or someone else. Sometimes I have to knit something and its true recipient is revealed later. It was fun to make. Anything with color changes is. I'm working on a few other things at the moment--socks for one niece, socks for Mom, a lace shawl (don't know who that's for either, but probably me), and pair of colorwork fingerless mitts--definitely for me! If it weren't for the knitting, I'd probably be at my wits end. Or blogging a lot more?
Grateful for: a hobby I love.
Friday, July 25, 2014
****** ******* ******* *******
I wrote the above a couple of weeks ago. I did pick myself up a bit. I went to show last Friday, solo, and enjoyed it. Took a long bike ride on Saturday. Generally had a pleasant weekend but still got a few things done. This week, I had some massively tired days. Yesterday was ridiculous--I was practically falling asleep at my desk. Today, I feel great. Not great about work, but totally awake and engaged. I'm still slacking off more than I want to. I think part of the problem is that I"m feeling a bit oppressed by my supervision. I am a project manager but I still have to defer to someone--my project director. She's not that involved but sometimes i have to clear things with her, but sometimes I don't. It's confusing and annoying. I think I might enjoy the job more if I really were independent and making the calls myself. The PD is loosing the reins a bit--but I'm still chaffing at the bit...as it were.
And boys. What can I tell you? A date here, a date there, but it doesn't go anywhere. I'm super frustrated and annoyed. Last night I had the most unpleasant exchange with a guy and it was all the worse because he seemed so promising. He wanted to talk on the phone, which was a nice change. I had a good feeling about him. Sure, he was a bit forward, but that was ok. He called when he said he would, he asked me a lot of questions. I reciprocated and I was starting to get to know him a little. I ignored some warning signs, but it was also kind of fun to consider the rather outrageous things he was suggesting. I didn't make any promises.
How did it fall apart? He drew a line in the sand over a very personal choice about grooming. I mean, really? This is something we have to talk about? This is a REQUIREMENT? No, just no. What I do with the hair on my body really isn't anyone's business. (I don't ask or want men to remove any of their hair--though a clean shave is appreciated. A beard is great too. It's the stubble I don't like, but that's about comfort.) We had quite discussion about it and I used terms like "the male gaze" and corrected him on improper use of anatomy terms. He seemed to think that I was an outlier--and that my choice was quite unusual. He said that men who'd never expressed any preferences on this count were lying to me. That in all his life, with the hundreds of people he'd asked about this issue, all of them agreed with him. I told him he was shallow. Yeah, I know, not the greatest rhetorical come back. He also wanted to make a bet with me, which he prefaced by saying, "You like money. Everyone likes money. You could use some extra money." His idea was to flag people down in shopping mall and ask them...well, how exactly would he have phrased this question without creeping people out, I don't know, but we didn't get that far. I said that's not how survey research works and I didn't care that much about money. I didn't want his money and I didn't need any extra money. Around then is when he told me that he understood why I was "still" single and was mid-sentence with another insult--so I hung up on him.
My bad for letting things go that far. For talking to him as long as I did. I was genuinely surprised that I would get rejected on these grounds--we hadn't even met yet! But he was asking too much anyway. What he wanted wasn't acceptable, even before my personal grooming choices were discussed. I just don't get it. I found the whole thing off putting and discouraging . It reminded me a bit of that young dude from many years ago who rejected me because I was too fat. He claimed that I would get "higher quality" men if I lost weight. That seemed so nuts to me. I'd get different men, sure. Men who valued thinness overall. I don't expect all men to find me attractive. But I also know that men like all kinds of women. That many men find both thin, medium, and larger women attractive. Hell, I know I find all kinds of men attractive. Let's give men in general that much credit. They aren't purely shallow creatures who only care about looks--or only care about a very specific set of criteria for looks. No. Men are humans, and human desires are wide and varied. And I've met lots of those men, and I'm sure I will meet more.
So thanks horrible internet dude for saving me from having to meet you face-to-face. As it turned out, you wasted less than an hour of my life. And I will count myself lucky because all of my boyfriends have been just fine with how I am in this world. Even if we weren't destined for lasting romance, it wasn't because of how I managed my body. Those men are out there too and I hope I meet another one of them soon.
Grateful for: being comfortable with my choices.
Sunday, June 08, 2014
Now where did I leave off? I think I'd started my exercise regime. Spring seems to be my time. I'm happy to report that I've been keeping it up. I'm doing the walk/jog routine three times a week. On the other days, I walk or take a short bike ride. I did skip one morning this week, but that day I did all my PT exercies along with a routine of push-ups and sit-ups. I haven't seen tremendous results yet, but I think it is helping. I'm in a good mood and I'm pleased with my consistency. I am still pretty tired each day at work but that should pass if I keep it up. I think I will do well with this through November or whenever we change to standard time. The cold isn't what I find hard to deal with--it's the dark. But if I can keep going trhough November, then I can take a little break over December and probably be no worse for wear. We'll see. I wonder if planning for time off is the way to make my routine a real, permanent aspect of my life, rather than a big push every other year. And then, what happens if I ever get a boyfriend? How will that work? Best not to worry about it--that bridge is a long way off if I ever do cross it. I will keep my intent to stay active. A bit every day, no matter what. It can be a walk, a jog, a bike ride, a hike--whatever.
What else? Boys, dates. Yes, I've had a few. I am keeping track. I made a list and I record all my first dates. Is it a sad state of affairs that pretty much the only dates I have these days are with dudes I meet online? Is that just how it works now? I do things--group bike rides, volunteer activities--but I don't meet single guys. I do talk to people and maybe I'll make friends eventually, which would be great, but these activities have never yielded dates. Even when I did the recreational sports back in the day, through which I did make some friends, I think I only ever dated one person I met that way. I did get some hopeless crushes, so that's something? Yes? No? I don't know.
I'm pretty sure I'm reasonably attractive and all that. I'm feeling impatient about the whole thing. I want to get this settled. I want to have a regular sex life. I want a partner. I'm tired of cooking for myself. I'm tired of struggling to find people to socialize with every weekend. It's so easy for me to just relax into being alone. Is it dangerous? Is it a trap? A much as I'd like a steady boyfriend, I also wish I had a steady friend to hang out with. Someone I could pretty much assume I was going to do something with every week. I have friends, but I don't have that core friendship that plays out into the backbone of a social life. Missing those two things, I might be really unhappy, but I'm not. I reasonably content, but there is an undercurrent of dissatisfaction in my life. Maybe it's because some of the people I'm closest to live far away (Seattle, Israel, England, Nashville...and other spots!). Maybe it's because I'm not making enough of an effort to reach out to the good friends I have nearby (lazy!). And it is because I want those connections to play a bigger part in my life and right now, they don't. I figure they will again and in the meantime, I have to just keep taking care of myself and get out of the house regularly.
Maybe this is due to my long period of unhappiness at my old job. The haze from that mess is still lifting. The pain is less intense. The only regret I have is staying as long as I did. I am getting used to the new job, I'm learning how to pace myself and not feel overworked. And, finally, I'm starting to enjoy it a bit. I think that's why I'm pretty content despite my not-so-active social life. It could be so much worse. It has been worse. And it's getting better. That feeling goes a long way to making up for not having a best buddy to see every week or even a boyfriend. It could be so much worse.
Grateful for: the new regime.
Tuesday, May 20, 2014
I want to start walking/jogging again in the mornings. I wake up early enough for this but I have a monstrously difficult time getting myself out of bed before 7am. Today, I didn't manage that, but I still went ahead and took a nice half-hour walk starting around 7:15. When I got home, I did a few PT exercises, took a shower, and I still could've gotten to the office by 9:30, if only I hadn't started a whole project thing on my computer when I should've been heading for the door. Maybe tomorrow I'll do better.
For my longer bike rides, I've been joining low-pressure organized rides and it's ok. I am often the slowest person, but what can I do? It's vaguely social, which is part of the point. I don't usually have any of those silly dates on the weekend, and my social activities seem kind of thin these days. Not complaining but I can easily spend the whole weekend with minimal social interactions. This seems...unhealthy. So, I pick a bike ride for both the exercise, challenge, and necessity of talking to other humans.
The ride last weekend was quite fun until nearly the end when things started to drag and I realized that I had to hustle to make my next event. (Yes--a social event on a Saturday--it does happen!). The ride was sponsored by the DC Public Library and, in fact, this was the 5th Annual Tour de DCPL. It was a 14-mile ride and we went from library to library, stopping and taking a look inside most of them. Some stops even had snacks. I was surprised by how much joy I experienced in those libraries. I do love the library, though I rarely visit these days. Anyway, it was good fun. A bit slow placed (I was never left behind), but with a few hills for a bit of a challenge. I'd say we had maybe 30 riders, which was just about enough for my taste. Those larger fun/social rides make me a bit claustrophobic, which ends up outweighing the social benefit.
Anyway...below, a few pics of the ride!
Grateful for: being physically able again.